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Health

The Importance of Staying Hydrated

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Our bodies are made up of approximately 70 percent of water. It is important to remain hydrated to keep the muscle functions of our bodies working properly. Staying hydrated also helps protect our joints and brain, helps with immune health and digestion and can even improve our mood.

It is important to replace lost fluid in order to remain healthy. Our bodies lose fluids everyday through perspiration, urination and even our breath. The risks of dehydration can be very dangerous. If a person does not consume enough fluids and remain hydrated, there are not enough fluids to move blood towards your organs. Symptoms of dehydration can mean not urinating for 12 hours or more, being too weak or dizzy to stand, extremely dry mouth or eyes and passing out.

Staying hydrated does not mean only consuming water as a fluid. Although water is the healthiest option, you can still get hydrated from the everyday liquids that are in a regular diet, such as fruit juice and iced tea.

The best way to determine if you are remaining hydrated throughout the day is to check the color of your urine. The more clear it is, the more hydrated you are. Another way to identify your level of hydration is by the ease of your bowel movements. Constipation and harder bowel movements come from a lack of hydration, and softer bowel movements are an indicator of a good hydration level.

The most common recommendation of fluid intake is six or eight 8-ounce glasses every day. This can vary depending on the health of an individual, the amount a person exercises, and the climate of their area.

For more information about the importance of hydration, and how much fluids you should consume, check with your doctor.

MacNeal Hospital

3249 S. Oak Park Ave.

Berwyn, IL 60402

708-783-9100